Since the first wave of legal NJ online casino sites flipped over the open sign in November 2013, progressives have paid out tens-of-millions, with the biggest individual hits coasting by the seven-digit barrier.
So it’s no wonder that jackpot slots are among the most popular game formats in the industry. In this guide, we take a deep dive into NJ online casino progressives, highlighting their defining characteristics, their pros and cons, and evaluating jackpot slot game selection on a site-by-site basis.
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What are the characteristics of a NJ jackpot slot?
In general, jackpot slots are played much like their non-jackpot counterparts, but differ in a few key ways.
With regular slots, payouts are determined by the game’s paytable, and never deviate from the amounts laid out there. While these types of slots may offer the chance to win a “jackpot”, they are usually referring to a static payout, which is predetermined before players begin their spin.
88 Fortunes, featured at Play SugarHouse, for instance, gives players the chance to win one of four such jackpots, with the Grand being the biggest. These are tempting prizes to be sure, but none are true progressives.
The prize pool offered in jackpot slots, on the other hand, is ever-growing, and is determined by how much other players have spent in their attempts to trigger the coveted prize. The current jackpot amount for any given progressive is almost always featured prominently in the game window, so you’ll never have trouble keeping up with the total potential payday.
While hitting a jackpot game’s main progressive is the ultimate goal, players can still benefit from making smaller, but more frequent wins, just as they do in regular slots.
In 888 Casino‘s Pirates’ Millions jackpot slot, for example, you’ll need to trigger the Bountiful Barrels Bonus Game to have a shot at winning the progressive. However, if you aren’t lucky enough to win the top prize, you still have a great shot at making a nice score by triggering the game’s free spins round.
How can I identify jackpot slots on NJ online casino sites?
Jackpot slots are among the most popular games at NJ online casinos, and as such are usually positioned front and center on their respective websites.
In fact, many sites have created a special “Jackpots” menu item, where you can easily find all of the progressives on offer in one convenient location.
Unfortunately, not all sites separate progressives from regular slots, making it a bit more difficult to see your jackpot options. In those cases, we recommend scanning the game library thumbnails and looking for slots with a jackpot amount listed right on top of the graphic. Usually these figures are updated in real time, giving you the chance to see how much you can win before jumping in the game.
If you still can’t find what you’re looking for, check over the thumbnails once more and look for any “Jackpot” or “Exclusive” ribbons, which sometimes adorn a site’s special or jackpot titles.
Of course, you can always refer to our list of all NJ jackpot slots offered on Garden State gambling sites located further down this page.
What are advantages of playing NJ online jackpot slots?
The most obvious advantage of playing a progressive slot machine is that the top-end payouts are significantly higher than what’s offered by traditional slots — not necessarily in terms of monetary value, but always in terms of wagering units.
For instance, a traditional slot might offer a maximum payout of $200k, but in order to achieve that, players would have to pony up $100 – $200 a spin. Not so for progressives, which often offer players a chance at $200k+ scores for under a buck per spin — that’s over 200,000 wagering units.
Another big plus to playing progressives is that the return-to-player can turn positive. Yes, it’s true. For every spin a player takes that doesn’t trigger a jackpot, the jackpot prize will ascend. Should it rise high enough, the game will eventually reach a tipping point where it returns over 100%.
Admittedly, this doesn’t happen too often, but there’s enough jackpot slots in New Jersey that the odds of one paying back 100% or more aren’t too outlandish.
Progressive slots require no skill to play, making them amenable to causal and new gamblers. Simply click the spin button and wait a second or two for the outcome.
And finally, NJ online casino jackpot slots are fun to play, typically offering compelling bonus rounds and lots of big-money sweats.
Jackpot slots are not without their drawbacks, otherwise no one would play traditional one-armed bandits.
First of all, progressives tend to be extremely volatile. There can be long stretches where the reels come back empty, or payout less than a player’s initial wager.
And hitting a top-end jackpot is akin to winning a small lottery — it can happen, and it does happen, but it’s a longshot. Players can increase their odds of striking it rich, but that typically entails increasing their wager as well.
On a similar note, the base return-to-player for progressives typically lower than it is for regular slots, meaning players will generally want to avoid progressives that have just been reseeded. However, it is worth noting that some NJ online casino progressives do offer sound base returns. Take for instance Divine Fortune, available at Betfair Casino and many other sites, which offers a base return of 96.6%. That’s above average even for a traditional slot.
Divine Fortune recently paid out over $271k on Golden Nugget Casino.
How to win a NJ online casino jackpot
With regard to player interaction, there really isn’t much to winning a progressive — simply press “Spin” and hope for the rest.
But in terms of engagement, there is typically a number of steps (and tons of razzle-dazzle) associated with going from “Spin” to “Jackpot.”
For example, a player fortunate enough to win the Jackpot Shores progressive at Pala Casino, will be pushed along the following multi-step jaunt:
- Wager $6.75 on a spin
- Trigger the bonus by accumulating three Wheel Bonus symbols
- Land on the arrow from the outer wheel
- Land on a second arrow from the inner wheel. From this wheel, players can also win smaller Rapid Jackpot prizes
- Finally, land on the Super Jackpot symbol, securing at least $100,000
The process makes for enough excitement to even get the most stoic gambler’s nerves crawling. No one ever said modern progressive slot machines lacked pizazz.
Recently hit jackpots on NJ online casino sites
Hitting a progressive jackpot is indeed a rare event, but when the stars align, someone will eventually walk away with the cash. So far in 2017, several New Jersey gamblers have had the pleasure of triggering such a reward, banking well over $800,000 total in the process.
The popular Loot’EnKhamun slot found at Borgata Casino paid off handsomely for two of the site’s online players earlier in the year, who won $50,060 and $103,240 jackpots in January and February respectively. The Loot’EnKhamun slot is also available at Borgata partner sites BetMGM and Party Casino.
In May, a Golden Nugget player proved that you don’t always need to bet big to win big, after taking home $119,627 on a $1 bet on the Divine Fortune slot. While the NetEnt-developed game can be played on multiple NJ casino sites, keep in mind that the jackpots are not all pooled together.
Tropicana gambler Kim S. made her own six-figure score on the morning of June 25, when she triggered a $197,139 jackpot on the Wonderland slot before even leaving home for work. A few weeks later, a Betfair Casino patron banked $132,396 on a yet another lucky Divine Fortune spin, which was truly incredible considering he was playing the mobile version of the game.
In August, the Divine Fortune progressive hit yet again, this time giving a Golden Nugget customer a $271,268 payday, the biggest on record so far in 2017.
What is the biggest progressive jackpot hit to date?
The largest recorded NJ online casino jackpot occurred on November 10, 2014. It was on that date that a player parlayed a tiny wager into $1,334,641 on the Millionaire Genie slot, offered by Harrah’s Casino.
The only bigger hit came at a Let it Ride table, when a player wagered $500 on Betfair Casino and scored a Royal Flush. The payout: $1.52 million.
Do NJ online casinos link their jackpot slots?
Some do, yes.
A linked progressive is when two or more sites share the same games/jackpot. The upshot here is that if a player places a wager on a jackpot slot on site A, the jackpot increases on all sites where the progressive is linked. The result is jackpots that climb at an augmented pace.
Typically, sites that are associated with the same NJ online gambling license and share a skin will link their progressives. A solid example is Tropicana Casino/Virgin Casino which link the progressive for its network exclusive Wonderland slot.
NJ online jackpot slots by operator
The casinos grouped together share jackpots for their respective games.
- Colossus Frac/Pot
- Medieval Gold
- Divine Fortune
What Betfair Casino’s jackpot slot selection lacks in quantity, it makes up for in exclusivity.
Both its Colossus Frac/Pot and Medieval Gold jackpot slots are unique to the site. Colossus Frac/Pot is of particular interest as its defining feature tempts players to choose between a safe bet (in the form of a guaranteed cash prize), or a shot at glory. More on how it works here.
Borgata Casino/BetMGM/Party Casino
- Biker Pigs (Big Series)
- Candy Store (Ca$h Fla$h Jackpot)
- Going Nuts (Big Series)
- Loot’EnKhamun (Big Series)
- Melon Madness (Big Series)
- Money Boat (Ca$h Fla$h Jackpot)
- Pirates Booty (Ca$h Fla$h Jackpot)
The progressives found on Borgata Casino/BetMGM/Party Casino are not flashy, or even particularly interesting or modern. But who cares when the top prizes can exceed $2 million?
Make no mistake, the Big Series is the “biggest” game in town. One of the reasons the jackpot grows so large — besides it being extraordinarily difficult to hit — is that it’s linked between three independent NJ online casinos. Not only that, the Big Series is comprised of four different slots, which too are linked.
The Ca$h Fla$h Jackpot doesn’t grow nearly as large, typically topping out in the mid-to-high four figure range. But it hits quite frequently — which comes as little surprise given that it too as linked across three sites, and three slots.
Tropicana may only have one jackpot slot, but at least it’s a network exclusive. Wonderland is also among the better looking and more fluid progressives we’ve tested, with a healthy dose of thematic glitz, pleasant music, and most importantly, a progressive that appears to hit quite frequently.
In June 2017, Wonderland paid out its biggest progressive yet: a whopping $197,139.
- Deal or No Deal
Virgin Casino one ups its sister site by offering two progressives: the aforementioned network exclusive Wonderland, and the site exclusive Deal or No Deal.
It really comes as little surprise that Deal or No Deal performs so admirably for the site, as it possesses a high level of brand recognizability, and incorporates many aspects of the fabled game show into its bonus rounds. It doesn’t hurt the the grand prize jackpot commonly flirts with six figures either.
- Jackpot Shores
Pala Casino and Pala skin Scores Casino are the only two sites to offer Jackpot Shores, which debuted in early 2017. This title is truly a slot grinders delight, featuring the coolest aesthetics we’ve witnessed on a slot, multiple bonus features, and three jackpot prizes — the biggest of which is seeded at $100,000.
The only real drawback is that players will have to wager $6.75 to play all 27 lines, which may be too hefty for some (and too small for others). We wish there was more betting diversity, but at least everyone will have the same chance of winning the progressive.
- The Royals Go Camping
- Casino Reels
- Ultimate Universe
- Saved by the Bells
- Dino Stampede
- Snack Time
- Steam Punk Nation
- Irish Riches
- Pirates Millions
Sadly, 888 Casino pulled the plug on its million dollar progressive, Ultimate Genie (formerly Millionaire Genie). But there are still more progressives on 888 than just about any NJ online casino, which is odd considering that 888 features one of the industry’s smallest game libraries.
Players won’t find any seven-figure jackpots, but there’s plenty of four- and five-digit scores to be had.
- Divine Fortune
Resorts and Mohegan Sun Casino are light on progressives, only offering Divine Fortune, which is found on multiple NJ online casino sites. Good news is the progressive is linked between the two sites, so it’s not uncommon for it to spike over $200k.
- Divine Fortune
Nothing special here, just Divine Fortune, which can be played on more than half of the industry’s casino sites.
Players will notice that the jackpot creeps up rather slowly, reason being that Play SugarHouse is still a smaller (yet growing) site. That, and the jackpot isn’t linked with any other sites.
- Divine Fortune
- Captain Nemo
- Millionaires Club III
- Rags to Riches
Golden Nugget Casino offers a fairly eclectic blend of progressive jackpots, not that we’d expect less from an online casino that supports nearly 450 games. In particular, the popular Divine Fortune slot should appeal to players, as the jackpot rises in a hurry. It’s rapid ascension is a testament to both Golden Nugget’s popularity, and the high prevalence of high stakes players on the site.
Why, just in August 2017 it hit for $271,268.06 — making it the biggest jackpot of the year to that point.
- Divine Fortune
- Captain Nemo
- Millionaires Club III
- Rags to Riches
Caesars offers the same progressives as Golden Nugget Casino, which is pretty impressive given that it’s a somewhat smaller site. The jackpots for all of these titles can easily reach six-figures, making for some potentially grandiose payouts.